Watch These Two Whitetail Deer Unleash Furious Punches on Each Other in a Territorial Tussle

Written by Sharon Parry
Updated: October 20, 2023
Share on:

It looks as if ownership of this patch of forest is hotly contested! As we see in this amazing trail cam footage, two white-tail deer can go head-to-head in forest disputes. They both rise up onto their hind legs and give us a show that looks very like a boxing match!  

Watch the Incredible Clip Below

Where Do White-Tail Deer Normally Live?

This particular footage was captured in Western Pennsylvania. However white-tail deer are found in almost every part of the United States. The areas with the highest populations are Georgia, Mississippi, Pennsylvania, and New York. Numbers are also rising in Alaska.

6,095 People Couldn't Ace This Quiz

Think You Can?

You may see them called whitetails or Virginia deer and they are a common game animal.

They get their name from the white patches behind their nose, around their eyes, inside their ears, and over their chin. And, of course, beneath their tail!

You are most likely to spot them in forests, as we see in this clip, you can also find them on prairies, in coastal areas, and in grasslands. They are actually very adaptable species that can survive in a range of climate conditions. Whitetails are herbivores and will be found where there is plenty of food. They like to browse on shoots, twigs, bark, and leaves. These guys also eat nuts, seeds, and grains. It is estimated that the total US whitetail deer population is between 25 and 35 million.

White-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) leaping through field

White-tailed deer are very agle!

©Amy Lutz/

How Do White-Tail Deer Normally Behave?

White-tail deer are normally nervous and shy creatures. If they see humans coming, they’re most likely to run away. As very agile animals, they can reach speeds of 30 miles an hour and leap through tangled terrain with no problem. They have a home range which is usually quite small and they do not migrate.

This species generally leads a solitary life, especially in the summer. Having said that, groups of does have been seen grazing together. Bucks may also form groups for short periods of time.

Conflicts can arise during the rutting season when males fight with each other to gain access to a particular female. The bucks are not strictly territorial, but they will try to displace each other from a resource that they want to guard. This could be a feeder, a particularly tasty persimmon tree, or a doe who is receptive to mating.

Most conflicts are more about posturing rather than trying to inflict serious injury on each other.

The photo featured at the top of this post is © Gary Gello/

Share on:
About the Author

Dr Sharon Parry is a writer at A-Z animals where her primary focus is on dogs, animal behavior, and research. Sharon holds a PhD from Leeds University, UK which she earned in 1998 and has been working as a science writer for the last 15 years. A resident of Wales, UK, Sharon loves taking care of her spaniel named Dexter and hiking around coastlines and mountains.

Thank you for reading! Have some feedback for us? Contact the AZ Animals editorial team.